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Author Topic: Bikes on East Coast Mainline  (Read 487 times)

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geebeebee

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Bikes on East Coast Mainline
« on: Feb 28, 2012, 21:58 »
I'm heading up to Northumberland in a few weeks and would like to take my Tranny... problem is that I'm planning to get the train and I'm slightly worried about leaving my lovely baby all on its own and prime place (in the guards van) for stealing by some evil person.

Does anyone have any experience with booking and going on the EC train? Any tips/do's and don'ts?

Thanks!

Rob-is-on-fire

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Re: Bikes on East Coast Mainline
« Reply #1 on: Feb 28, 2012, 22:06 »
I've never taken my bike on the EC line but my general advice for bikes on trains - good lock and make should the conductor knows that the bike is yours. Often the guards room is next door so there's usually train staff in the area

dudders

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Re: Bikes on East Coast Mainline
« Reply #2 on: Feb 29, 2012, 10:49 »
Took mine to Edinburgh & back no probs.  Hung it in a bracket on the wall, standing on back wheel like in an uplift, so I suppose a bike lock is an option, securing it to the bracket.  Got to get a shift on to get it out when you get off the train, as they don't like to wait about for you.

retep

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Re: Bikes on East Coast Mainline
« Reply #3 on: Feb 29, 2012, 11:22 »
I have done it many times from London to Edinburgh and back at the start/end of uni holidays. Never had a problem. Have left spare sets of tyres and my big luggage bag with track pump attached next to it as well several times and nothing has been nicked or even moved.

Make sure you book your bike space well in advance, I've had trouble getting one when I've left it close to the travel date. Also, make sure the guard knows where you're getting off so he'll wait for you to get your bike out.

geebeebee

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Re: Bikes on East Coast Mainline
« Reply #4 on: Feb 29, 2012, 19:42 »
Thanks guys, I appreciate your responses! Gonna book my tickets this week so fingers crossed!

Andy_

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Re: Bikes on East Coast Mainline
« Reply #5 on: Feb 29, 2012, 20:08 »
Coming back from Middlesbrough a few weeks ago, my bike ended up locked in the guard van, without a soul in sight on the platform, and the train nearly departed! I had to stand with my arm in the door and wave frantically for someone to come help. The driver stuck his head out of the door and called me a f**king nuisance and that he was now late. I informed him I had told several guards at Darlington, who should have radioed ahead to warn Doncaster. He shut his face.

Moral of the story: Make sure you book the bike on when you reserve the tickets, make sure to tell everyone in a 5 mile radius where you're going and that you have a bike, and try and get to the end of the train before you get to the station. I did these and it still went awry, so maybe cross your fingers too?

I locked my bike into the racks inside the van, can't be too careful! That said, the doors are locked and the only people with the key are the guards.....so it SHOULD be safe. I still found myself scouring the platforms from my window at every stop to make sure nobody had swiped it.
« Last Edit: Feb 29, 2012, 20:10 by Andy_ »
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retep

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Re: Bikes on East Coast Mainline
« Reply #6 on: Feb 29, 2012, 21:01 »
Coming back from Middlesbrough a few weeks ago, my bike ended up locked in the guard van, without a soul in sight on the platform, and the train nearly departed! I had to stand with my arm in the door and wave frantically for someone to come help. The driver stuck his head out of the door and called me a f**king nuisance and that he was now late. I informed him I had told several guards at Darlington, who should have radioed ahead to warn Doncaster. He shut his face.

Moral of the story: Make sure you book the bike on when you reserve the tickets, make sure to tell everyone in a 5 mile radius where you're going and that you have a bike, and try and get to the end of the train before you get to the station. I did these and it still went awry, so maybe cross your fingers too?

I locked my bike into the racks inside the van, can't be too careful! That said, the doors are locked and the only people with the key are the guards.....so it SHOULD be safe. I still found myself scouring the platforms from my window at every stop to make sure nobody had swiped it.

Did you tell the guard on the train where you were getting off? The station staff, as is obvious from your experience, can't be relied on to pass information on to your stop. They will be dealing with multiple different trains whereas the guard on the train only has you're train to deal with.

Andy_

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Re: Bikes on East Coast Mainline
« Reply #7 on: Feb 29, 2012, 23:51 »
I did tell the guard on the train. Problem was, it was the staff at the station who had to unlock the van, not those on the train. It was just a lack of communication. There didn't appear to be anything more I could have done.

For what it's worth though, I travel on the train with my bike loads (a couple of times with a guard van deal) and that's the first time I've had a problem. They're normally very good/understanding.
When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.

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